Parks/Nature Reserves/Zoo suggestions & transportation?

Discussion in 'Orlando Hotels and Attractions' started by lam, Mar 20, 2011.

  1. lam

    lam Mouseketeer

    Jan 25, 2007

    My husband always said NO WAY to Disney that is until this year. For reasons I won't go into, he is coming along willingly. It'll be his first ever trip.

    My son and I know his limitations so have booked 'off-site' @ Doubletree Seaworld.

    My husband loves nature, parks,reserves and natural wildlife etc and I'd love to take him on a 1 day tour of Natural Florida, however all I can find are airboat rides on the everglades (we'd both hate that- sorry).

    I've seen some parks/reserves etc within 'striking' distance of our hotel BUT we are non-drivers and theres no transport there. I'm not sure if Mears would do tranporation? I was looking at Split Oak in Orange County BUT we're going in July and I AM NOT BUG FRIENDLY so we'll give it a miss as it wousd seem theres plenty of them there and I am allergic to many bug bites requiring medication!
    The other place we looked at was central florida zoo but its in Sanford and I don't know how to get there without a car or how much a round trip taxi or whatever would cost. Do you know?

    Anyone else got any suggestions? we're doing Animal Kingdom but he wants to see wildlife/plants etc native to Orlando!!

    Any assistance would be grealy appreciated as my son and I really want dad to enjoy the trip!


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  3. livndisney

    livndisney DIS Veteran

    Feb 11, 2007
    Have you considered Leu Gardens or Bok Tower for plants?. You should be able to get to Leu Garden via the Lynx Bus system.
    Personally I would not make the trip to Central Florida Zoo. A taxi would be very expensive and they don't have that many animals. (They just shipped the last elephant they had to Miami). What about Sea World or Discovery Cove? You may also want to consider Gatorland. (all of those are much closer than Central Florida Zoo)
  4. Straitlover

    Straitlover DIS Veteran

    May 9, 2003
  5. lam

    lam Mouseketeer

    Jan 25, 2007
    Thanks so much for this.I had no idea the preserve existed and it looks fabulous.

    Any idea roughly how much a return trip taxi for 3 adults may be from Doubletree@Seaworld? OR if Mears shuttles go that far out?


  6. JimMIA

    JimMIA There's more to life than mice...

    Feb 16, 2005
    Just so you know, the true Everglades starts about 125 miles southeast of WDW, and that's a straight-line "as the eagle flies" distance. There is nothing like the Everglades anywhere near Orlando.

    There are airboat rides all over the place, and it's a fun ride, but don't expect to see much wildlife. Airboats are very loud and scare the wildlife away.

    And an airboat ride in a river or lake is nothing like an airboat ride over sawgrass in the true Everglades...really no comparison. The best airboat rides are in Miami -- there are three that actually go into Everglades National Park.

    We see deer pretty regularly at various places around WDW, and river otter are often spotted at DVC's Old Key West resort, usually along the canal leading over toward DTD. Many species of snakes (most of them non-venomous) are routinely seen throughout WDW, and we've seen several alligators over in the Epcot/Beach Club area.

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